Pets have a curious nature that can put them in contact with toxic substances, and many of these come in the form of common household cleaning products.
Even things like dental floss can be toxic if ingested by dogs.Similarly, if your dog eats a large quantity of detergent, itcan get detergent poisoning. It is essential to treat detergent poisoning as soon as the first symptoms begin to occur.
Dogs who suffer from a disorder called Pica will try to eat anything. If you see evidence that your pet may have swallowed detergent, call the ASPCA hotline immediately!
Pet owners should know as much as they can about pets and poisons. In this article, you’ll find:
- How to recognize different types of detergents and their examples
- Symptoms of detergent poisoning
- Giving first aid to a dog that has swallowed detergent
- What happens when you take your dog to the vet after it ingests detergent
Types of Detergents
The most common types of detergents found in homes include:
- Soaps: Frequent ingestion of soaps can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. Homemade soap may blister or burn the mouth and esophagus of your dog if ingested. Examples of soaps are laundry and bar soaps.
- Non-ionic detergents: In this category, you will find some laundry detergents and most dish-washing detergents. Shampoos are another example of non-ionic detergents. They are less harmful than the other two types. At most, they can be mildly irritating to your dog’s oral and respiratory tissues.
- Anionic detergents: These will be more damaging to dogs. If your pet swallows electric dish-washing detergents, they may experience vomiting and diarrhea. But there are also instances where the chemicals in anionic detergents produce burns on the mouth and esophagus. Your dog won’t be able to eat and may also suffer from abdominal pain.
- Cationic detergents: This class of detergents includes all the disinfectants, fabric softeners, and sanitizers. It is most hazardous if ingested by a dog. That’s because cationic detergents damage the mucous membranes. Thus, they can produce many of the symptoms of detergent poisoning we’ve mentioned above. Aside from that, dogs also exhibit excessive drooling, mouth pain, and depression. Pets may even collapse, which is why it may be crucial to get them to a vet.
The Pet Poison Helpline suggests that dogs that eat liquid soap in capsules are more likely to show detergent poisoning symptoms than those who swallow hand soap.
Symptoms of Detergent Poisoning in Dogs
Even though the symptoms can vary, they are usually noticeable. So, if your dog exhibits the following signs, take them to a vet as soon as possible:
- Hair loss
- Lack of appetite — probably due to gastrointestinal lesions
- Gastrointestinal lesions
- A swollen abdomen
- Burns in the mouth
- Muscle weakness
- Excessive drooling
- Skin or eye irritation
Vet Visit for Diagnosis after Detergent Poisoning
Don’t attempt to induce vomiting if you think your dog has swallowed detergent. Forcing your dogto vomit can cause more harm to tissues after exposure to toxic chemicals. It can also result in pain and more burning. Therefore, you could be doing more harm than good!
Instead, call the vet and explain why you need an appointment. Then flush out your dog’s mouth with running water to help limit the damage from the detergent.
If their eyes are tearing up, it could mean that some detergent got into their eyes. Wash the eyes as well. Then, take them to the vet.
Usually, vets will do some tests, including a urinalysis, to make sure your dog has a case of detergent poisoning. If you know which type of detergent your dog has swallowed, let the vet know. The information will help them during their analysis.
Are there other substances that I should keep out of reach from my dog?
The most common medicinal poisoning that occurs in dogs is due to the use of Aspirin and Paracetamol. Don’t give either to your dog — even for providing relief from pain. Overdosing a dog is easy and could even be fatal. Besides that, storeall medicines out of reach. Return unused medicine to your pharmacist.
Could more poisons be lurking in my home?
Yes, one toxic substance commonly found in our homes is rodenticide. When storing these, make sure you do so where your dog can’t access them. Also, save the packaging. If your pet does ingest some by accident, you can inform the vet about the name of the poison.
Aluminum foil is another thing you should keep well-hidden from pets. Here’s what to do if your dog eats aluminum foil. Dryer sheets arealso toxic to dogs.
The most important piece of advice we can give you is not to panic if your dog swallows detergent or eats a bar of soap. Get the remains of the chemical away from your pet and call the vet.